WIEA Board of Directors

Tara Tindall is an enrolled member of the Ho-Chunk Nation and grew up in the Indian Mission, Black River Falls. Dedicated to Indigenous Education, Tara believes that education honors the ancestors who have sacrificed so much for today’s generations. Tara possesses an undergraduate degree in History from University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point; a Professional K-8 teaching license originally certified at University of Alaska Fairbanks; a Professional 316 Reading Teacher and
Reading Specialist license and a MS in Curriculum and Instruction in Literacy from University of Wisconsin- Madison.

Tara began her involvement in Indian Education almost 40 years ago in the Sandpillow Headstart Local Parent Committee and the Black River Falls Title VI –JOM Indian Education Committee. Tara served ten years for the Ho-Chunk Nation Education Department as the Johnson O- Malley Indian Education Program Coordinator, assisting with academic, cultural, and incentive activities in the community, as well as overseeing the Pre- K12 Program—a tribal scholarship program for Ho- Chunk students. Johnson O’Malley serves American Indian students in public schools.

Tara taught in the Gallup-McKinley School District New Mexico and the Black River Falls School District – both districts high in at-risk families, English as Second Language speakers, and a large population of American Indian students – providing remedial instruction for struggling readers.

Hobbies and interests include family time, knitting, quilting, gardening, reading, writing, cooking and spends summers in her husband Curtis’ hometown of Fairbanks, Alaska, doing flower care.

Crystal Lepscier, Ed.D. (Waqsepaehketukiw) is an enrolled member of the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa. Her mother is enrolled Stockbridge-Munsee and father (kaeh nap) is enrolled Menominee, making her a descendant of both Wisconsin tribal communities. She is a representative of the East Region and serves WIEA as the Treasurer. In May of 2022, Crystal completed her Education Doctorate (Ed.D.) in First Nations Education from UW – Green Bay. She earned both her Master of Science (M.S.) degree in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis (2011) and her Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Studio Art (2005) from UW-Madison. She currently works at UWGB as the First Nations Student Success Coordinator. Her additional board affiliations include, Kaehkenawapahtaeq Charter School, Title VI PAC for Shawano School District, and Cooweeja Indigenous Alumni Affinity group.

Shannon Chapman currently serves as the WIEA Secretary and a Representative of the East Region.  She is a member of the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin and currently serves as the Menominee Tribal Education Director.  She is a graduate of Menominee Indian High School (1991).  She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from St. Norbert College (1996) and a Master’s Degree in Educational Administration from Marian College (2008).  Prior to her current role, she spent 20 years at the Menominee Tribal School as teacher, assistant principal and principal/administrator.  She serves on the College of Menominee Nation Board of Trustees, the Shawano Title VI Indian Education Parent Advisory Committee, and is a founding board member of Kaehke?nawapahta?e?q – a Menominee language-based Montessori charter school, which is set to open in Fall 2022.  She resides with her family in Shawano, WI.

Brian holds a Masters in Education from the University of Minnesota-Duluth and is in the final stages of completing his Doctoral Studies Degree in Indigenous Education.

He is currently Director of the Lac du Flambeau Public School Cultural Connections Program and serves as the Director of the Waaswaaganing (Lac du Flambeau) Teaching and Learning Institute.

As WIEA Vice President, Brian is a staunch advocate of Native education and cultural inclusion. He also serves on the Wisconsin Humanities board and continues his advocacy for Indian education locally and across the state.

Brian lives in Lac du Flambeau, Wisconsin, with his wife and children.

James E. Pete, DBA, currently serves as the President of the Wisconsin Indian Education Association and a Representative of the Northwest Region. He is currently retired, a member of the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians, has two sons, 10 grandchildren and six great grandchildren. He has a doctorate in Business Administration from California State University.

Susan is a member of the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians and proudly serves not only her community but Native Wisconsin as a WIEA board member.

Susan believes WIEA is exemplary in their commitment to ACT 31 and to providing historically accurate, culturally embedded, place-based, contemporary and developmentally appropriate curriculum about the history and contributions of Wisconsin’s Indigenous peoples throughout the state. She says WIEA continues to highlight the message that American Indian nicknames and mascots are not neutral symbols, and that their continued use by schools, sports teams and other organizations have negative consequences for ALL students, not just Native American students.

Susan is the Tribal Outreach Coordinator at Nicolet College, working with three of the 11 sovereign nations of Wisconsin located in the Nicolet service area.

Susan lives in Minocqua, WI, with her husband and is active in the American Indian community across the state and beyond.